A man has been jailed for 18 years after being found guilty of a series of offences in which children were plied with cocaine then sexually assaulted.
William McNaughton, 56, of Chapel End, Broxted, was sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday after being found guilty of 13 charges at an earlier hearing.
He was found guilty of one count of rape, eight other sexual offences and five counts of supplying a Class A drug to a child.
The court heard that the offences occurred in the 1990s and all involved three children under the age of 13.
The Senior Investigating Officer, DI Dawn Enstone of the Essex Police Child Abuse Investigation Unit, said:
"The offences dated back to the 1990s and the victims, who were then aged between 8 and 13, were subjected to cruel and sustained sexual abuse.
Before the children reached their teenage years he plied them with illegal drugs, claiming this way he could monitor the quality of the drug supply. Of course, this made the already vulnerable children less able to protect themselves.
It takes tremendous courage to be able to come forward and reveal the details of such horrendous child abuse and by doing so, these three brave children are survivors rather than victims.”